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Managing adaptation to changing climate in coastal zones
Lane, D.E.; Clarke, C.M.; Clarke, J.D.; Mycoo, M.; Gobin, J. (2015). Managing adaptation to changing climate in coastal zones, in: Baztan, J. et al. Coastal Zones: Solutions for the 21st Century. pp. 141-160.
In: Baztan, J. et al. (2015). Coastal Zones: Solutions for the 21st Century. Elsevier: Amsterdam. ISBN 978-0-12-802748-6. xviii, 376 pp., more

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Author keywords
    Coastal communities; Coastal environmental change; Community-based research; Enhanced awareness; Strategic decision making

Authors  Top 
  • Lane, D.E.
  • Clarke, C.M.
  • Clarke, J.D.
  • Mycoo, M.
  • Gobin, J.

    The consequences of global climate change present particular challenges to coastal inhabitants and their communities, where nearly one-half of the world's population lives. These consequences include storm surge, flooding, and erosion from more frequent severe coastal storms, and rising seas. This chapter describes an international Canadian–Caribbean coastal community-based research initiative designed to raise awareness among, and to communicate to, community members, the evidence of local impacts of climate change and to examine adaptation strategies to address these impacts. Selected Canadian and Caribbean coastal communities are first characterized by their physical environment and their economic, social, and cultural assets as well as the predicted vulnerabilities and threats. Community priorities are captured to develop and then evaluate alternatives for adaptive strategies. These alternatives, applied in specific local contexts, include the suite of adaptive strategies to (1) protect the community from the expected impacts of coastal environmental change, (2) accommodate the impacts through managed resilience, (3) retreat from the coastal zone in order to reduce inhabitants' vulnerabilities, and (4) do nothing—the most common strategy in practice—in preparation for the expected impacts. Top-down and bottom-up collaborative efforts of the communities of practice within the coastal zone are required to manage adaptation in the coastal zone. Bottom-up enhancement is delivered through the direct engagement of community education beginning with the local school children. Top-down enhancement seeks community participation for the establishment of new municipal governance and strategic integrated policy toward improved coastal sustainably under the threats of the changing climate.

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